Director of Lifelong Theological Education and the Doctor of Ministry

The new Bexley Hall Seabury Western Seminary Federation has announced a search for a Director of Lifelong Theological Education and the Doctor of Ministry.

The Federation brings together the rich legacies and academic strengths of two historic Episcopal seminaries—Bexley Hall (founded 1824) and Seabury-Western (founded 1833)—and is a distinctive Episcopal center for learning, formation and discipleship in the Midwest. Since their founding to serve the needs of the church on the American frontier, the two seminaries have focused on bringing the Good News from the church into the world, and on expanding theological education to make it accessible to underserved communities of faith. 

Our mission is to offer rigorous and innovative theological education in a variety of learning platforms, ranging from full-time residency (at Trinity Lutheran Seminary in Columbus) to intensive and hybrid courses (combining short residencies and on-line work) based in Columbus, in Chicago, and in parish and other institutional settings around the country. In addition to its degree and diploma programs (M.Div., D.Min, and the Diploma in Anglican Studies), the Federation is committed to offering rigorous theological education at the masters level to a broad range of participants engaged in life-long learning, opening its courses to all qualified applicants who seek to deepen their formation in the Christian spiritual and intellectual tradition. We value our strong partnerships with Trinity Lutheran Seminary in Columbus and with ACTS, the Association of Chicago Theological Schools, and hope in the near future to engage additional Anglican and ecumenical partners both here and abroad. Although headquartered in new facilities in the Lutheran Center in Chicago, Bexley Seabury is in effect a seminary-without-walls. 

The successful candidate will help pioneer the future of 21st century theological education, creating new networks of entrepreneurial leadership and renewed learning for lay and ordained people. The Federation seeks a skilled leader and administrator for its Lifelong Theological Education programs, which include the DMin in Congregational Studies and the ACTS DMin in Preaching, as well as non-degree programs in continuing education for lay and clergy leaders. Reporting directly to the President, the Director will work collaboratively and creatively with faculty and staff to develop these programs and administer them, to expand audiences and participation, and to forge productive partnerships with others. The Director may teach in the DMin program in Congregational Development or other Lifetime Education programs as qualified and needed. 

Qualified candidates will demonstrate a strong commitment to theological education in a post-Christendom, ecumenical, pluralist, multi-racial context. Familiarity with contemporary congregational life is required. We are looking for a person with demonstrated experience in academic and/or ecclesial administration who is also a creative thinker and collaborative leader. Strong oral and written communications skills are a must, as well as expertise in administrative computer applications and easy familiarity with current and emerging social media. 

Core Job Functions 

1. Oversees and supervises the Federation’s DMin in Congregational Development. This includes but is not limited to: 

  • Overall program planning and assessment 
  • Overseeing student advising from admissions through graduation 
  • Identifying and recruiting qualified faculty, facilitators, thesis advisors and readers, and the like. 
  • Working with marketing team to develop and implement marketing, recruitment, admissions, and retention strategies. 
  • Developing additional partnerships and relationships with other DMin programs and directors in related areas of focus. 
  • As feasible, teaches one DMin course per year

2. Oversees and develops the Federation’s program of lifelong theological education. This includes but is not limited to: 

  • Planning and executing the program in accord with the Federation’s mission, constituencies, and advancement strategies. 
  • Identifying and creating innovative individuals, topics, and approaches with wide appeal. 
  • Establishing and nurturing connections with the Federation’s credit-carrying offerings. 
  • Working with the communications team to maintain and enhance Federation presence on social media and the Federation website. 

3. Oversees and facilitates the Federation’s participation in the ACTS DMin in Preaching program. This includes but is not limited to: 

  • Representing the Federation on the Preaching program’s Program Committee. 
  • Working with Federation students and advisors toward successful and timely completion of the degree. 
  • Identifying and recruiting qualified advisors and thesis readers. 
  • Developing and implementing marketing and recruitment strategies that complement the program’s strategies and are in accord with the Federation’s strategy. 

Qualifications and skills: 

  • Post-graduate degree in a theological discipline; Ph.D, Ed.D. or D.Min strongly preferred 
  • Knowledge of the theory and practice of theological education, including its role in professional development 
  • Knowledge of and experience with the Episcopal Church 
  • Significant experience in theological education and/or congregational leadership, preferably in the Episcopal Church 
  • Demonstrated commitment to teaching and learning in an ecumenical and inter-religious context 
  • Demonstrated record of strong administrative, planning, and operational activities in an accredited institution of higher education or at the diocesan/ regional level 
  • Demonstrated ability to work constructively as a member of a team and independently 
  • Demonstrated teaching ability at seminary level or higher. 
  • Competency with budget and fiscal management 
  • Working knowledge of educational technology such as Moodle or an equivalent online learning platform, and of social media. Ability to learn and embrace new technologies with demonstrable ease. 

The Bexley Seabury Seminary Federation is committed to recruiting a diverse faculty, staff and student body, fostering a climate that treasures differences and provides rich opportunities for learning. To that end, Bexley Seabury actively seeks women, minorities, veterans, and disabled persons for employment and promotion. 

We would like to fill the position June 1, 2014 or earlier. Applications and nominations are welcome until the position is filled. 

Applicants, please submit an application letter, current curriculum vitae, and three references to:

Br. Ronald Fox, BSG
Bexley Seabury Seminary Federation
8765 W. Higgins Rd. Suite 650 
Chicago, IL 60631

About the author: Jaime